Collaborative network evolution the Los Angeles terrorism early warning group
Rust, Sunchlar M.
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This study bridges the narrow divide between collaboration theory and networking and views organizations as a source of collaborative processes. Social network analysis is applied to determine how the Los Angeles Terrorism Early Warning Group (TEW) evolved from a small group of actors to a diverse, county-wide network bridging public-private, local-state-federal, and functional divides. The TEW demonstrates an example of organizational problem solving where a network facilitated collaboration in a wickedly complex and uncertain environment. The network's consensus-based innovation, collaborative processes, and meta-leadership helped the network evolve. These factors strengthened the collaborative ethos of the network and set the stage for success as the network meets current and future challenges. The TEW's bottom-up, consensus-based network expansion contrasts sharply with top-down collaborative approaches, such as the creation of the National Counterterrorism Center and Department of Homeland Security. Lessons from the TEW's well-paced evolution provide insight into how to facilitate collaborative action and build collaborative capacity for the future.
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